Selective postsynaptic co-localization of MCT2 with AMPA receptor GluR2/3 subunits at excitatory synapses exhibiting AMPA receptor trafficking

Linda Hildegard Bergersen, Pierre J. Magistretti, Luc Pellerin*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

94 Scopus citations


MCT2 is the main neuronal monocarboxylate transporter needed by neurons if they are to use lactate as an additional energy substrate. Previous evidence suggested that some MCT2 could be located in postsynaptic elements of glutamatergic synapses. Using post-embedding electron microscopic immunocytochemistry, it is demonstrated that MCT2 is present at postsynaptic density of asymmetric synapses, in the stratum radiatum of both rat hippocampal CA1 and CA3 regions, as well as at parallel fibre-Purkinje cell synapses in mouse cerebellum. MCT2 levels were significantly lower at mossy fibre synapses on CA3 neurons, and MCT2 was almost absent from symmetric synapses on CA1 pyramidal cells. It could also be demonstrated using quantitative double-labeling immunogold cytochemistry that MCT2 and AMPA receptor GluR2/ 3 subunits have a similar postsynaptic distribution at asymmetric synapses with high levels expressed within the postsynaptic density. In addition, as for AMPA receptors, a significant proportion of MCT2 is located on vesicular membranes within the postsynaptic spine, forming an intracellular pool available for a putative postsynaptic endo/exocytotic trafficking at these excitatory synapses. Altogether, the data presented provide evidence for MCT2 expression in the postsynaptic density area at specific subsets of glutamatergic synapses, and also suggest that MCT2, like AMPA receptors, could undergo membrane trafficking.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)361-370
Number of pages10
JournalCerebral Cortex
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2005
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
L.H.B. was the recipient of a postdoctoral fellowship from the Norwegian Medical Research Council. This work was supported by grant no. 3100A0-100679 from Swiss Fonds National de la Recherche Scientifique to L.P.


  • Energy metabolism
  • Lactate
  • Monocarboxylate transporter
  • Postsynaptic density
  • Synaptic plasticity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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